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See Features for background on the evaluation.


DigitalCommons is an ASP-style institutional repository system marketed by ProQuest. The underlying services are provided by and operated by bepress.

This evaluation is based on the services available during the during Q4 of CY 2005. It was not clear if there is a version number associated with this functionality.


Because DigitalCommons is an ASP solution, many implementation details are hidden and can be changed behind the scenes without affecting the perceived operation of the system.

For the most part, at the time of this evaluation, the system does not expose documented APIs for application interaction. Nearly all of the system's functionality is available only through the user interface, which makes integration with service applications impractical.

Data Model


Since there is no API to evaluate, we briefly touch on some of the services provided by DigitalCommons.


Add data

There is no programmatic interface for object creation. Objects can be created through the user interface, but no documented programmatic interface was found.

A template is used to specify the format the identifier string and is configurable at various levels. The full URL of an individual object or collection may be thought of as the persistent identifier.

There is no programmatic interface to add additional properties to objects. Additional files can be associated with the primary datastream of an object using the user interface.

Access data

There is no programmatic interface for accessing objects. There is a templating system that would allow this information to be structured in a manner allowing it to be more easily culled from

Remove data

There is no programmatic for removing or tombstoning objects.

Manage metadata

There is no programmatic interface to modify object metadata. It can be modified in the user interface.


There is no programmatic interface for aggregating content.
Collections can be created in the user interface.

Create aggregation

Remove aggregation

Change aggregation membership

Find aggregation members


Bulk ingest

Repository instance users with bulk ingest privileges can submit an XML package containing the objects to ingest. The containing structures for these objects (e.g., journal and issue) must already have been created in a previous, non-bulk operation via the user interface.

After the ingest is complete, the user is notified asynchronously via email.

Bulk export



Users log in using their LDAP credentials or email address and password.

Access control

User management

There is no programmatic interface for managing users. Users can create a new account and administrators can add and update users only from the user interface. Alternatively, LDAP can be used to manage users. In this case, while Digital Commons cannot manage the users, it can consume services from LDAP.

Policy management



Virtual object representation




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